Machines We Cover
We cover the two most
popular metal-cutting machines: CNC machining
centers (mills) and CNC turning centers
(lathes). Most CNC-teaching schools are
by local industry to teach the use of these
We place the biggest
emphasis on three-axis vertical machining
centers and two axis turning centers. For
machining centers, we also include materials
related to rotary axes, as are required for
four and five axis machining centers, including
horizontal machining centers. For
turning centers, we include information on live
tooling and the C-axis, as are required for
Pre-Requisites We Recommend
Prior to taking these CNC
classes, students should understand several
basic machining practice topics, including:
These topics are commonly
presented in programs before students
are allowed to take any CNC classes.
Scope of Our Content
This content is
comprehensive. We cover all three tasks a person
must master in order to become fully proficient,
including programming, setup, and operation.
Upon successful completion, students will be able to write
programs at G-code level (manual programming).
They will know how to get a machine ready to run
production (setup). And they will know how to
operate the machine and complete production runs
Estimated time to completion
We estimate that students
will average approximately 30 hours to complete
each class, including time to study the
materials, to take the tests, and to do the
exercises. Actual time will vary, of course,
based upon the student's aptitude.
Possible Post-Requisites We
After completing these
classes, students will be ready for classes on
advanced manufacturing topics, like computer
aided manufacturing (CAM) systems and computer
integrated manufacturing systems.
Approach We Use
We use our proven Key
Concepts approach, which allows us to stress the
reasons why things are done as importantly as
how they're done. We constantly build on
previously presented information, providing a
logical and highly tutorial method for
There are ten key concepts.
Six are programming-related and four are setup-
and operation-related. If a student can
understand ten basic principles, they are well
on their way to becoming proficient CNC users.
The same ten Key Concepts are applied to both
Though we begin with
programming, any time we come to a topic that is
related to setting up or running a CNC machine,
we cover it during programming presentations. These kinds of
topics (for the machining center class) include assigning program zero with workpiece coordinate system offsets, using tool
length compensation & cutter radius
compensation, and issues related to sizing in
the first workpiece and making sizing
adjustments during a production run.
When the student gets to
the setup and operation part of the class (Key
Concept 7), they will already possess a good
understanding of what it takes to get a machine
up and running production.
Key Concepts and Lessons
The ten Key Concepts are
further divided into lessons. While the same ten
Key Concepts apply to both machine types (and
can be applied to any kind of CNC machine tool),
the lessons vary from one machine type to the
Our On-Line Content
FANUC Certified Education
CNC Training can be completed on-line. Here is
the starting page for the machining center
Here are the lessons for Key
Concept number one.
Here are the activities for lesson 1.1.
Every lesson contains a presentation, reading
materials, and a test. Programming related
lessons additionally include a coordinate sheet
exercise or a programming activity.
Here is the web-based media player
Presentations are narrated and highly
animated. They contain an easy-to-use navigation
pane, and students can view spoken words in text
format, should they desire (helpful for the
hearing impaired). Presentations can be viewed from just
about any device that has on-line access,
including desktop and notebook computers, iPads,
iPhones, Android tablets, and Android smart
Reading materials for each
lesson are provided in .pdf files, so students
can view them on their electronic devices, print
them should they wish to, and save them for
future use. Here is an example page.
After studying the presentation and reading
materials for a lesson, students take an on-line test.
Here is an example.
Tests are automatically graded and students
will immediately see their results. The results
will also be sent to the instructor/facilitator
at your school (via email). You can record the
grade (in our Excel file grade book or in your
own grade managing system) and reply to the
student should you wish.
Some programming-related lessons additionally
include a coordinate sheet exercise
to be completed and submitted. Here is an
Coordinate sheet exercises are provided in
form-style .pdf (Adobe Acrobat) files in which
students can type answers. They can then save the file and
submit it to the instructor/facilitator via email. We
provide answers to help with grading, and even
supply a set of template response email texts
with which to respond to students to show them
Other programming-related lessons include
programming activities. Here is
The first few programming activities require
students to fill in the blanks to an existing
program. As students progress, programming
activities have more and more blanks to fill in.
Eventually students will be writing programs on
Once a program is written, the student can use NCGuide to check
it. With NCGuide, students can run programs and
see tool paths for programmed motions, which
helps them verify that a program is correct.
And, they will get plenty of practice
working with programs on an actual FANUC
They then submit programs for grading
(possibly just a screen shot ot the plotted
program). The instructor/facilitator will
grade their work (again, we provide answer
programs to help with grading), record the grade, and
respond to the student using the template
response email text.
The instructor/facilitator will also have
student access to all curriculum content. They
will additionally have the ability to monitor
We provide a set of instructor materials that
include instructions for getting started, lesson
plans, answers to coordinate sheet exercises and
programming activities, and response email
templates to respond to students. We also make
it easy to view the NCGuide tutorials.